After you get engaged, one of your first choices is what sort of wedding you want. One option available to you is a destination wedding. This will probably change every other choice you make from your dress to your wedding date. Is a destination wedding right for you? That likely depends on where your priorities lie. This pro and con list is designed to help you consider your options if you’re debating a destination wedding.

Pro: Package Deal

Destination weddings are fantastic if you don’t want to have to do much planning. Most people who go for a destination wedding do so through a resort — and these resorts likely have wedding packages ready for you to pick from. A wedding coordinator will team up with you and help you make decisions remotely. With this arrangement, you know that your wedding will go according to plan — and if there is any bump in the road, the events team at your resort will already have a solution because they’ve done this so many times.

Con: You’re Going In Blind

This is the flip side to the fact that you will likely be purchasing a wedding package. You will have much less control over the details of your wedding. For some, this isn’t such a bad thing: if you aren’t super into planning and details, this can make it very easy for you. However, if you’ve been building a wedding pinterest board of ideas since before you got engaged, you might be disappointed that you don’t get to tailor everything to your vision. Also keep in mind that unless you can afford a trip out to your wedding destination before your big day, you might be going completely sight unseen.

Pro: Memorable!

Everyone will remember your destination wedding. Most destination weddings will have planned excursions and will be a vacation for all of your guests. If everyone you know is having traditional church weddings or weddings at a local hall, your destination wedding will stick out in everyone’s minds. This isn’t a priority to everyone, but if you want to make a statement this can be your moment to shine.

Con: Expensive

Destination weddings can be expensive: you must factor in your own travel accommodations and flight. The cost of getting to your venue — especially if you are getting married in another country may be prohibitive to your guests. Keep in mind that this might not be the case; some destination wedding packages can be very affordable, especially as they’re usually assuming you will have a small number of guests.

Pro: Built In Theme!

You don’t have to worry about your destination wedding being striking, and you won’t have to worry so much about a theme. Your wedding colors will probably take their cues from the venue itself. Your fall mountain wedding is going to have a certain look, as will a tropical beach wedding.

Con: Legality

You may run into a little legal red tape if you are trying to plan your destination wedding. Take care to pay attention to the local laws to make sure that your wedding is actually legal: your wedding coordinator will probably have advice for you on how to go about doing your wedding paperwork. Keep in mind that this may require some time at your venue before the ceremony. Another option is to have the wedding ceremony be symbolic and have your actual legal wedding at the local courthouse.

You Will Have Fewer Guests

This can be both a pro and a con. People you love may not be able to attend your destination wedding. Friends and family who have small children or are caring for an elderly loved one will likely be unable to travel. They may not be able to afford the trip even if you warn them of the costs in advance. If you have sick or elderly loved ones, they may not be able to make it.

That all said… a destination wedding is a great way to limit your guest list. Your Mom will be unlikely to pressure you into inviting all of your cousins to your cruise wedding. Your Dad likely won’t be asking you if he can invite his friends from the office. The coworker who you can only take in small doses will understand that space is limited. This may overall be a plus or minus for you, but either way it is something big to consider.

Ultimately, it comes down to the kind of wedding you want. Do the pros outweigh the cons for you when it comes to destination weddings?

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